NTIA’s interactive broadband map highlights digital divide


the quality and cost of broadband problems remain for households across the United States, and the Biden administration wants to draw attention to this grim reality. The National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) has published what it says is the first interactive public map detailing the “Numeric fraction“in broadband access. You will not only see areas where broadband speeds fall below official targets (25 Mbps down and 3 Mbps up), but correlate with areas of high poverty. can search for specific locations including tribal lands and minorities settlements.

As you can see in the image above, the card isn’t particularly flattering. Performance deficits are spread across the country and are not as concentrated in specific areas as one might think.

There is of course a political motivation behind the card. Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo saw this as support for President Biden’s US employment plan, which includes a “once in a lifetime” effort to connect everyone in the country with fast and affordable internet access. . It’s also a not-so-subtle review of the previous administration, suggesting that past rural broadband efforts did not do enough to significantly address the gaps in internet service.

Of course, changing this card for the better will not be easy. In addition to political obstacles, civil servants must fine-tune broadband cards and obtain the cooperation of Internet service providers who weren’t always impatient to serve rural and low-income areas. The data only highlights the problem – it’s a whole other matter to solve it.

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